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Art critics and art fairs - friends or adversaries?

Symposium - Thursday, 2 November: Art critics and art fairs - friends or adversaries?

Art critics debate art fairs with fair organizers and market experts

It is no secret that art critics don't always empathize with art fairs. But what are critics and arts-page journalists to do when they confront the issues of covering an art fair? What is more important - to focus on the quality of the art as they would in the case of a curated exhibition, or to concentrate on a matter-of-fact report on the fair as a short-lived market phenomenon? How do art critics judge art fairs, say, like ART COLOGNE? What are they looking for? What are the differing preferences and expectations of critics and market observers? Questions like these will be the focus of a symposium titled ‘Kunstkritik und Kunstmessen - Freund oder Feind?' [Art critics and art fairs - friends or adversaries?]. It will be held in the Barcarole auditorium at the Cologne Trade Fair Centre (Fourth Floor, West Entrance) on 2 November 2006 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.
ART COLOGNE runs from 1 to 5 November.

Seven arts-page journalists, art critics and art fair organizers from Britain, France, Germany and the United States will be debating their different approaches to the subject of art criticism versus the art market. They will be: Georgina Adam, The Art Newspaper (London); Valérie Duponchelle, Le Figaro (Paris); Judd Tully (New York); Art Frankfurt director and gallerist Michael Neff; Georg Imdahl, art critic of the Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger; Eileen Kinsella, chief editor of The ArtNewsletter (New York); and Claudia Herstatt, art critic, die Zeit (Hamburg). Marcel Krenz, a journalist and art historian (Cologne/New York), will chair the four-hour symposium. Arts-page journalists, art critics and members of the fair-going public interested in the mechanisms of the art market are invited. Visitors are welcome to take an active part. Conference interpreters will be on hand to provide simultaneous English and German translations.

The symposium will be followed by the award of the AdKV-ART COLOGNE Art Criticism Prize. The Prize is sponsored by Koelnmesse and the Arbeitsgemeinschaft deutscher Kunstvereine. The ceremony will take place in the ‘Open Space' exhibition area at ART COLOGNE (Hall 4.1, Ground Floor).

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